Tory Audet of Chelsea and Leo Grandbois of Orford, claim Eastern’s Gold
Shilo Rousseau, FISU multi medallist, skis to silver
The Eastern Canadian Cross Country Ski Championships finally got underway today after Friday’s races were cancelled due to cold temperatures. The distances were shortened, and the time gaps compressed, so the more than 500 racers could get through the course, when the temperatures warmed above -20 deg. C. and before it was too dark to race.
There was a bit of déjà vu with the medallists, as the sprint winners from December’s Candy Cane Cup topped the podium again.
Chelsea Nordiq’s Tory Audet, a junior, won the Open race, by a 5 second margin over Nakkertok’s Shilo Rousseau. Rousseau was a FISU Games Biathlon multi-medallist and a student at the University of Ottawa. In 3rd was Mont Ste. Anne’s Emmanuelle Moreau, the 2nd junior finisher.
Tory Audet: “First was my goal today, but I wasn’t sure how it would go because it was very cold. It was a great race though. I usually do better in the sprints, but I am excited to see how tomorrow goes, it should be good.”
As with the women’s race, the Candy Cane Cup sprint champ, Leo Grandbois, came through with an emphatic 9 second victory. Due to the forecast cold temperatures, Grandbois a National Team and Pierre Harvey Training Centre athlete drove up from his hometown of Orford for the race, arriving just 1 hour before the start. Nicholas Randall of the National Training Centre in Thunder Bay raced to second and Alexandre Cormier of St Jerome was 3rd, the top junior on the men’s side.
Leo Grandbois: “I love skiing at Nakkertok, it’s a good fit for me. The snow was super slow because of the cold conditions. It was just 1.3 km’s today; I think the organizers did the right thing by keeping it short for the athletes”.
In the other age group races local medallists included:
- U16 F 2nd Evelyn Davies, Nakkertok
- U18 F 1st Addison Frank, Nakkertok, 3rd Anna Semeniuk, Nakkertok
Sunday is the final day of Eastern’s competitions, with mass start classic races on the schedule.
Racing Wrapped up today at the World Junior and U23 Championships in Whistler. Canada finished 6th in both the relay competitions junior and U23. Local skiers on the mixed team’s were Nakkertok’s Jasmine Lyons and Luke Allan from Ottawa.
Photo Credits: Tim Austen
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